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Book News: Listen To The First-Timers Nominated For PEN Prize

Mon, 09/29/2014 - 5:19am

A night before the winner's declared, the writers shortlisted for the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize read their works. Listen here first. Also: Thomas Pynchon might soon be coming to the big screen.

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'Rooms' Is Haunted By People (And Ghosts) That Can't Let Go

Mon, 09/29/2014 - 5:03am

YA author Lauren Oliver's debut adult novel features an old mansion occupied by dysfunctional characters, both living and dead. Oliver fits these seemingly disparate lives together like a puzzle ring.

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Inaugural Poet Recalls A Closeted Childhood Of Cultural Tension

Sun, 09/28/2014 - 3:06pm

Richard Blanco, who read "One Today" at Obama's inauguration in 2013, explores the collision of sexual, artistic and cultural identity in his new memoir about his childhood in Miami.

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'Guests' Is A Story Of Mystery, Manners And Dramatic Love

Sun, 09/28/2014 - 5:35am

NPR's Linda Wertheimer talks to novelist Sarah Waters about her latest book, The Paying Guests. It's a historical novel and a lesbian love story, with a courtroom drama mixed in.

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From Glass To Artificial Light: The Innovations That Got Us To 'Now'

Sun, 09/28/2014 - 5:35am

NPR's Linda Wertheimer speaks to Stephen Johnson about his new book and TV series, How We Got to Now. He looks at six innovations that he thinks shaped the modern world.

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Virtual Reality, Corporeality Collide In Cronenberg's First Novel

Sat, 09/27/2014 - 3:16pm

Director David Cronenberg's debut work of fiction is not for the faint of heart. Consumed follows two journalists as they chase stories of cannibalism, backroom surgeries, self-mutilation and murder.

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Banned Books Remind Us Of The Power Of The Written Word

Sat, 09/27/2014 - 7:52am

Pick up a banned book. Look for the scenes and language that once made people blush. Do those sections still have the power to make you gasp?

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Writer Paul Theroux: The Short Story Is 'Diabolically Hard To Master'

Sat, 09/27/2014 - 7:04am

"It's only 10 or 15 pages," he says, "but still you got to get it right." Theroux's new collection, Mr. Bones, tells stories of the odd person out.

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'Love Is The Drug' For A Teen Caught In A Dystopian D.C.

Sat, 09/27/2014 - 5:03am

Alaya Dawn Johnson's latest is about senior at a Washington, D.C. prep school in the midst of a global pandemic. This book offers a chilling glimpse of a dystopia that could be just around the corner.

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'Boy On Ice' Explores The Emotional And Physical Toll Of Dropping The Gloves

Fri, 09/26/2014 - 2:35pm

In 2011, 28-year-old Derek Boogaard — one of the NHL's most fearsome fighters — was found dead of an accidental overdose of painkillers and alcohol. He also showed signs of serious brain injury.

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What's Mittens Thinking? Make 'Sense' Of Your Pet's Behavior

Fri, 09/26/2014 - 2:32pm

Animal behaviorist John Bradshaw's books Cat Sense and Dog Sense detail what cat and dog owners should expect from their animals. Cat Sense originally aired Sept. 5, 2013. Dog Sense originally aired May 26, 2011.

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As The Ebola Outbreak Worsens, A Book About Compassion

Fri, 09/26/2014 - 2:11pm

This week, the CDC predicted there could be tens of thousands of Ebola cases if the disease is not controlled soon. Author Alaya Dawn Johnson turns to a favorite novel for wisdom amid this epidemic.

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NPR Bestsellers: Paperback Nonfiction, Week Of September 25, 2014

Fri, 09/26/2014 - 2:03pm

Comedian Billy Crystal reflects on his life and career in Still Foolin' Em, which appears at No. 13.

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NPR Bestsellers: Paperback Fiction, Week Of September 25, 2014

Fri, 09/26/2014 - 2:03pm

Jo Nesbo's 2013 thriller, The Redeemer, has maverick detective Harry Hole searching the darkest corners of the former Yugoslavia. It appears at No. 14.

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NPR Bestsellers: Hardcover Nonfiction, Week Of September 25, 2014

Fri, 09/26/2014 - 2:03pm

Debuting at No. 14., Lawrence Wright's Thirteen Days in September presents an account of the 1978 Camp David conference during which Jimmy Carter convinced Israel and Egypt to sign a peace treaty.

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